Visit From Thiebaud

Yesterday, March 29, was quite an experience. I had the privilege of meeting one of the greatest painters alive today, an icon of the POP art movement (although he says he doesn’t even like POP art :)). Below is the subject matter he is probably most known for. This was particularly exciting for me because I have been quite influenced by his work. Which is one of the reasons I was one of 3 or so painters invited to have brunch with him. Not to many people make me nervous but when I shook his hand I think I said something like “It a honor to meet you Mr. Thiebaud. I’ve always admirer been work of your “.

I wonder how many banquets he has been honored with that had cakes like this on the desert table :).The next two pictures have not been altered. Look at the guy that looks like the source of light for the rest of the room. Thats me. I don’t know what wrong with me. Maybe I was really hung up over the awkward introduction with Wayne Thiebaud.
Actually I was having my retinas burned by a laser like stream of sunlight coming from a window opposite my seat.
I labeled the 3 painters who I mentioned were invited to the brunch. Shawn Diediker, to my left, is a good friend of mine and a great painter
Gary Earnest Smith is a Utah great to whom I have recently come to know a bit.

Vern Swansen of the Springville Museum of Art and Diane Stewart , a prominent supporter of all things art in Utah, presented Thiebaud with a “most honored artist of Utah ” award. Did I mention he lived in Utah as a teen? I hang on every word. I never said I was cool.Following the brunch hundreds more showed up for a lecture and question/answer with Thiebaud. He was so impressive. I have to say the two things he said that impacted me most were that he doesn’t think of himself as an artist but a painter, that history will decide otherwise, and that,when asked who his favorite painters were he said that he loves all paintings. What a positive way to approach such a judgmental and critical field. I wish we were all that humble and positive. His paintings are worth upwards of a millions dollars but that attitude is priceless. Is that some kind of credit card slogan? Hmm?


8 responses to “Visit From Thiebaud

  1. Oh man, Jeffrey – how I envy you being in the presence of Wayne Thiebaud. I wouldn’t know how to act. You rank right up there with him and the rest of the crowd. Great experience, thanks for sharing.

  2. That’s awesome – you really lit up the room! :)Humility is key when you are well known, I think. Not many people have it or can pull it off when they pretend to have it. When it is sincere though, it is truly remarkable.

  3. I hope one day I can come to a banquet with multiple cakes honoring you. Mostly for the cakes, but for you too:)Thats really awesome, though, that you got to be invited when he has influenced you so much.

  4. It was neat to read about this side of you. I never have heard about people you admire and look up to. That is very wonderful you were able to be a part of something that meant so much to you. He sounds like an amazing man.

  5. Very cool! Nearly all of the ‘daily painters’ should probably write Thiebaud a letter of thanks for his legacy.Hmmm. I should probably draft one myself, instead of goofing around on the ‘net…

  6. Jenny Meese pointed me to your blog–she knows I’m a fellow lover of Thiebaud. I can’t believe you got to meet him! I love his landscapes best of all. Thanks for sharing the Thiebaud love.

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